Thursday, December 6, 2012

DIY Hair Flower Loom

As an instructor for Riley Blake I get to do all sorts of fun things. My most recent challenge was these fun hair flowers. I really went crazy with them. On the Riley Blake site I am publishing a tutorial how to use a loom to make these hair flowers. That will be published December 17, 2012. When that happens I will edit this page to include the link to find it. I think it's a really fun way to use your creativity and make something for your loved ones.

As I was preparing my Etsy shop to sell the supplies to make the hair flowers a good friend of mine gave me the idea to use these "hair" flowers as a broach or hat accessory. The ideas really are endless.

Well what you all come here for... How to make your Loom!

1- 4"X4" Block of wood. I used MDF because it's fairly inexpensive, light weight, and relatively stable.
16- Grip-Rite #13 x 2 in. 6D Bright Steel Finish Nails 
Sand paper
Mod Podge
Finish sealer spray that is compatible with metal

Optional supplies
1- 3 1/4" X 3 1/4" Piece of decorative paper (optional, but if your going to go to the trouble why not make it look pretty?)
Acrylic paint
Hand router
Compass (if you don't have a compass try measuring a string to 1 3/4", place a tack on one end of the string and a pencil on the other)

Once you have the MDF cut it's a good idea to sand it to make sure the paint will adhere to the wood and make sure the rough edges don't catch and pull on the ribbon as you weave it.

Optional Preparations

I also used a router on my block for the top four edges. It gave me a smooth edge that doesn't poke and looks nicer.

Next I painted the block on all 6 surfaces. First the bottom, let that dry then the top and sides.

After that I used Mod Podge to seal the surface and glue the paper down to the block. Once that was dry I added a second coat of Mod Podge to the top of the paper to make sure it was also sealed.


Using a ruler find and mark the center on the paper side of the block by measuring in two inch from the outer edges of the block.

Use the center mark to place your compass and measure out 1 3/4" from the center. If you don't have a compass try measuring a string to 1 3/4", place a tack on one end of the string and a pencil on the other. Place the tack on the center mark and let the string be your guide.

Place a ruler to measure in 2" from the side of the block. Mark where the ruler and circle you just make intersect on both top and bottom of the circle.

Turn the block 1/4 turn and repeat the same mark for the intersecting lines on the top and bottom of the circle.

Measure in from the side and mark at the intersection of the ruler and circle for both top and bottom intersections.
Repeat marks for all four sides of the block.

Now use the ruler and placing it diagonally mark top and bottom intersection of circle. Repeat for the other diagonal line.
This picture shows that there should be 16 marks around the circle
Insert nails into each of the marks you have placed on the front of the block.

Now you will want to wash your hands. The nails leave a dirty grey film on your fingers. 
Spraying the entire top of the block, including the nails, with sealer spay. This will prevent rust and keep the dirt and mess from the nails off your ribbon. While spraying the block I turn the block a full 350 degrees as you apply the sealer. This will help make sure you get all sides of the nails. I also added a second coat of spray again making sure to hit the nails from every angle.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

The friendship star pillow cover for friends!

Can you believe Thanksgiving is right around the corner? That means Christmas will be here in a flash. So it's time to find the time for gift making. A lot of my gifts go unappreciated but there are those few occasions when I made something special for someone and I knew they really treasure it... those are the times it's all worth it.

I was thinking of sharing some of this years gifts that are ready for giving, then I remembered this is a public blog and that would take away all the surprise :)

Instead I'll share with you a class I taught last night to some friends in my church.

 I demonstrated the friendship star block and how to  made it into a pillow cover for a decorative throw pillow.
This is the block I taught. It was fun to be presenting to good friends. I could really joke around and enjoy myself. I like teaching... but I really like hangin' out with my friends and sharing what I love with them.

One of the lucky ladies walked away with the above kit. Everything she needed to make the pillow cover except for the thread.

Here's the finished product... drum roll please:

As you can tell this last picture is different fabric than the first, which shows how versatile the friendship star can be!

Happy Holidays

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Does that make fall the season of friendship?

This morning I woke up to a cool crispness I have been waiting for! Yeah fall is here! I live close enough to the mountains that I can see all the colors. I love the colors of fall. They are calming and warm looking. And orange... the color of friendship. Does that make fall the season of friendship? I guess it is the time I start thinking about my friends and family and something meaningful to do for them for the Christmas Holiday.

Today I am feeling thankful. Thankful for the cooler weather. Thankful for the colors of fall. Thankful for my family and friends that mean so much to me. I am thankful for the season of harvest that is slowly coming to a close. Thankful that the last thing I need to can is grape jelly for this season. I am thankful for the blessing that  I have to work on things that I love IE; helping at the elementary school, quilting, curtains, gardening, and attending the Temple. Does life get any better than that? Spending my days doing what I love!

I am sending my best wishes and prosperity into the universe. I hope that others will be able to find a way to be happy and find joy in the everyday things that can feel so mundane. Yes even in laundry. For me that would be finding the joy in the colors and texture of the fabrics. The smell of fresh cloths. The warmth as they come out of the dryer. That warm feeling makes me want to grab a cup of hot chocolate and snuggle in a fuzzy blanket and spend the day with a good book :)

Here's to You and Yours!

Friday, September 14, 2012

I Opened an Etsy Shop... YEAH!

I took the plunge, started a business and opened an Etsy shop! I'm so excited I wanted to share with you some of my work :)

This first one is one of my favs! the fabrics are awesome, the colors are exciting, and the movement of the pattern draws you in. When I made this quilt I was thinking about a teenager,but many of my friends (being a more mature audiance) were stunned by the out come.

This next one I made to teach a class about half square triangles. I need to find the minature, I know it's around here somewhere. I love the half square triangle. It has such versitilty. If you're looking for one square to learn, this would be it!

The last quilt I added to date is "Fly Away Home." I was trying out a new technique to make flying geese. It was so fun I couldn't stop!

Watch for a later post. I plan to give instructions for both half square triangles and flying geese. Maybe they'll be your new favorite technique. 

Friday, August 31, 2012

Refinish your old Kitchen Stool into a Trendy Accessory

I found two Kitchen Stools for $7 at a local yard sale.What a deal. With a little bit of sandpaper and paint they look like new!

This Tutorial will show you how to add the paint to the legs. You can find the instructions to add the fabric on the Riley Blake Fabrics Cutting Corners.


  • Kitchen stool (as many as you would like)
  • Sander
  • Protective Gloves
  • Paintbrush
  • Paint (I like the kind that has the primer included)
  • Lacquer (I didn't add this step to the instructions because I used  a brand I don't like but that that I needed to use up)
  • Something to protect your surface
  • Blocks to lift your kitchen stool will help keep it clean (I used a milk crate)
Having a companion can make the time pass faster :)

It makes it easier to paint if you sand the finish off the stool. Having the surface protected will keep the area cleaner, it also keeps the stool from getting scratched.

Make sure to wipe as much of the dust off the wood as you can. This dust will get in the way of the paint adhering to the wood properly. Plus it makes a mess everywhere. I will sweep my area just to make sure that pesky dust doesn't stick around.

Starting at the bottom paint the legs and insides first. Include the bottom of the seat. After the first coat of paint dried I went back to look for spots I missed.

There you have it! Your done.
Adding the fabric is easy! 

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Silly Me!

I just realized I didn't post a picture of my finished lunch bags
Here it is...
Here's to a new  school year!

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Reusable Lunch Bag- Riley Blake Laminates

This DIY project uses the Riley Blake Laminates. They are easy to sew, and can be easily wiped down with a wet cloth.
Cut 1: 12.5" X 20" for outer bag
Cut 1: 12.5" X 20" for lining

Cut 1: 2" X 12.5" for outer bag
Cut 1: 2" X 12.5" for lining

Fold the outer bag and lining in half with right sides together. They should measure 12.5" X 10" each.
Sew up all four sides using .25" seam allowance.

Refold fabric with rightsides together, with seam allowance touching.
Using a ruler measure 1.75" from the point draw a line.

Using the line as a guide sew along the drawn line.
Trim away corner, leaving a .25" seam allowance.

Turn outer bag rightside out. Slide the lining into outer bag, wrongsides together.

Matching seam lines, sew around the top of the bag about .5" from the top.
trim excess fabric with pinking sheers to .25" from sewn line

With wrong sides together topstich the outer bag strap and the lining strap.
Use pinking sheers to trim away excess fabric on both sides of the sewing line.

Pinch the top of the bag opening about 1.5" in and insert strap. Pin in place then sew into place.

Thanks for checking out my blog! You can find the instructions for the upright back on Select the Cutting Corners tab, after July 30, 2012

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

New Mexico Fire :-(

I was asked to make this quilt for a friend who lost half their home, two out buildings, and an antique truck in the New Mexico fire last month.
My oldest daughter helped choose the fabrics. I think she has the eye for color!

Next week I'll get together with some friends from the same ward and quilt it! Watch for the finished project.

My heart and prayers goes out to all those who are fighting the forest fires in the surrounding areas! Thank you for helping keep us and our homes safe.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

blood sweat and a few tears

I made this quilt for a friend who recently moved. Because it was a surprise, I couldn't post it till now. What is not shown on the picture is that each of the white pieces of fabric were signed by friends who will l miss her and her family.
The yellow "sun" circle says,"may the sunlight of faith ever warm your heart" -Gordon B. Hinckley-

The best part of the project is the tear of gratitude my friend gave to me. It's that sort of feeling that makes the time and effort of quilting worth it!

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Crayon Art

I tried my hand at crayon art.

I didn't add instructions for this because you can find them almost anywhere by searching crayon art. But this second example was my idea...

This one I set the canvas flat on the floor. I held the crayon over the canvas. When I hit the crayon with the blowdryer the wax dripped onto the canvas. Then using a swirl motion with the toward the canvas.

Even more... My eldest daughter made a sample,

I love the energy she has captured!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Exciting Preview!

I have been feverishly working to be ready for my RileyBlake tutorial. Today I will spend some time scrubbing my article. On Monday it will be published! I am adding a preview picture of the quilt in a secondary colorway.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Sheepie and Bear

I have some exciting news! I have been accepted to design and present a tutorial for Riley Blake Designs. A little of what's to come...
I am using these fabrics to make two twin size quilts for my teenage daughters. Once the quilts are done we're planning on a bedroom makeover. Looking at the fabric gets me excited to sew. The tutorial should be coming out in the middle of March.
Because I love to look at the pictures on Blogs, I find that my Blog is mostly pictures. I wanted to add one more. In an earlier post I had a cute little bunny. I had so much fun with it I needed to make more. Here's what I did...
I used the Bunny Hill Designs: Baby Bear and Lollipop. Quick and fun! They also made some really great gifts for some younger girls in the neighborhood.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Christmas is past... but the gifts remain.

I made these gifts for my youngest daughter.

Matching dresses out of Cream Satin and sparkly pink Chiffon. I used Sister Smocks IJ803 by Indygo Junction for my daughters dress and Baby Doll 4707 by Simplicity for the baby doll dress.

I used the same baby doll pattern as previously mentioned and the pajama pattern 4910 by Butterick for these three jammies.

The best part? I paid for the patterns (on sale at my local fabric shop) and the Tinkerbell ribbon. But other than that every piece of fabric was scraps or chunks left over from another project.
Can I say that's a good deal!?